Shoes, socks or barefoot?

barefoot, or socks. I get introuble at formal gigs sometimes b/c I have to take my shoes off to play. I know it is mental, but it IS!!! If I can't feel the pedalboard, I have a hard time getting quicker strokes out, and I always feel off balance

at dive bar gigs, I will wear Teva's with my normal "metal" uniform, so I can quickly get them on and off. This bothers the hell out of our guitar player, but I don't care. It has become joke of the band now...part of our culture.

I’m in the same club . Years back I used to be 50/50 shoes or socks depending on where I was . Since starting back up 7 years ago I realized I can only play with socks or barefoot.
So for anything but a formal gig is white socks or barefoot depending on what footwear I’ve got on.
Formal type gigs it’s black socks and nobody notices anything , and if they did , nothings ever been said .
Playing in any footwear throws off my time, speed and feel. I’m 100% sure it has to do with back injuries and the condition of my back or more pointedly the nerve damage I have in my legs due to the injuries.
It’s like I can’t feel what the footboard is doing and everything feels clumsy , sluggish and awkward with any type of footwear on .
If the need should arise and for appearances shoes had to be worn , I guess I’m gonna have to go this route………





Comfortable shoes; sneakers, dance shoes, loafers. I have played in cowboy boots and work boots (not recommended at all). I have played barefoot and in just socks. Not a fan.

I had a friend who used to work in the Capezio warehouse in Totowa, NJ. I'd go over there, and he'd throw a couple pair at a time out the back door for me when nobody was looking. I had a few pairs of white, and a couple pairs of red ones. They all wore out. Capezio no longer makes bright colored dance shoes, I'm afraid. I just got a pair of red sneakers that are working out pretty well.
Sticky floors in venues with bare feet.

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Toe powder
For me, definitely shoes- skin/socks on cold / sharply machined metal footboards are not a good feeling. Any sort of casual, low top, "old school", non-athletic (well, maybe in the 70s, but not anymore) sneaker is fine- Adidas Superstar ("shell toe"), Converse Chucks, Puma Suede, the non-modern skate design Vans (the slip-ons or the Keds-like laceups), etc. I can play in dress shoes if they're not the stiff patent leather ones. I've played fine in low-top Docs before but they're a bit stiff. Despite being from the coast and wearing flops or being barefoot most of late spring / summer / early fall, I can't play in flops.

Re: restroom then stepping on pedals- well, I typically don't touch the footboards with my hands- not even when packing/unpacking- so, not an issue. Besides, I don't touch my face or food without washing my hands first. I'm not a germophobe, but, ew.

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